- Posted June 12, 2012 by
Watertown, New York
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Dumb, Dumb and Dumber...Cable Shows Are Dumbing Down America
Turn on your local cable network these days and what do you find? $40 a month for 199 channels! Sounds like quite a deal until you lift the hood and kick the tires of most cable networks in America. Talk about a race to the bottom.
You will see some, and I use that word sparingly, good shows on cable. NAT Geo & Discovery are two that come to mind. But the others? Of course, you'll argue, "This is just your opinion." That's true.
To make matters worse, networks use a rating system to determine which shows will get a second season. The same concept is used by election pollsters who ask voters what issues are most important.
Are we getting the shows we deserve when ratings determine which shows get cut and get kept? Is that system fair to Americans that hope to find something of intelligence to watch after a hard day's work?
When you look at Time Warner Cable's monthly lineup, you'll find that TNT or FX have one new movie a month. Yes, you can buy more on Pay Per View.
Aren't we already paying for movies when we pay the cable companies?
TNT and others repeatedly play the same movie for months on end. Aren't there millions of movies?
We have one cable company in my area-Time Warner Cable. They charge $40 a month for basic cable and the first tier.
What would the price be if I were able to select only the shows I wish to purchase? Oh, TWC doesn't offer a bundling for intelligent choice. That would make the other channels too expensive overall so they say.
When the Federal Government allowed monopolies of one cable company in many areas, there was supposed to be a trade off. Many in government feel the private sector can do things better than the government so the monopolies were awarded ..IF.. the cable companies developed broadband access to rural areas.
Has the Government checked to see if that trade off is working? Does every home in rural America have access to high speed Internet now?
Drawing a comparison from what people are watching of cable shows to politics, it doesn't surprise me that the wrong choices for shows and politicians are made every season and election.
Ice road Truckers or Frontline and the BBC? Hummm.
Seems clear to me, but then Liberals don't make up the majority of Americans. Progressive views are not yet victorious in every election or in the choice of programming on cable.
Free markets? Yes, we have them. But the product those markets bring us often are not what many people want...or deserve to have available by choice.
"Nevertheless, the way cable companies conduct their selection process for shows that they give space to on the networks we pay for monthly suggests that, if one of them accidentally put her head up the sleeve of their shirt, they could not find their way out and would have to wear it around for all eternity, asking for help and then bumping into the furniture.
Shows that depict, "Cheating on your spouse? Great idea! Casual affairs with people you work with? Why not! Restarting your failed relationship for the seventh time on the theory that this time will be different? Of course! "
Hiring a President that likes firing public sector workers while he claims to want to create jobs in the private sector? Absolutely!
What we watch influences how we think. The America we have? Well, you can get an indication of what that America is and what it will be by flipping through the channels on any cable network.
Dumb dumb dumb dumb: TV's stupidest shows
by Linda Holmes, a writer in Washington. D.C.